Josh Lewis is a Jerk and other truths

I’m sure that Robert Newman is not only handsome, with a winning smile, but he is probably also a lovely person, but I’m afraid that Josh Lewis is and always will be a big jerk. In fact, I considered calling this post “Why I hate Josh Lewis.” My anti-Josh bias will probably become apparent as I make comments on things, so I thought I might as well explain it.

First, my first favorite soap couple ever was Kelly and Morgan on Guiding Light. While by that point I had been watching for 6 or so years (I was literally started in the crib by my grandmother), they were the first ones to really capture my attention. I struggled right along with them through their own problems and through Nola Reardon’s manipulations. I was soooo happy when they got married and things seemed to finally all be right with my childhood world, even Nola was growing up and moving on with Quint. Just then Josh happened.

This was so long ago that Reva hadn’t even come to Springfield yet and looking at the backstory now, his loss of Reva was one of the reasons he was like he was then, mostly about sex and business and out to get people in love. He was an arrogant jerk who wasn’t used to be turned down by women. Now I would have taken any breakup of Kelly and Morgan hard, but this wasn’t your normal 3rd person breakup that any soap fan has to accept as a fact of life. Josh deliberately targeted Morgan. He seduced her sexually, he encouraged her to take on a spoiled brat persona, and promised to make her a supermodel and convinced her that all her family and friends were doing was holding her back. Now I admit there must have been a weakness in Morgan already or all this wouldn’t have worked, but he didn’t have to lead her on in so many fronts and so many ways. He drug it along, encouraging her to destroy her marriage with Kelly and any other relationship that wasn’t with him. Finally, he was done with her and then he told her the truth. She couldn’t be any model and he never intended to help her career, the whole thing was set up to get her to sleep with her until he was done with her. Then he laughed at her. HE LAUGHED! Anytime he and Reva have any problem, I remember that laugh and I think, “Good. You deserve what you get.” Morgan had utterly destroyed every other aspect of her life to be with him and now he was done with her. He took her to such a point that even I, their most devoted champion, couldn’t hope that they would reconcile, not just right then, but ever. Kelly deserved better and the girl with red hair and shy smile was gone forever. Morgan was completely devastated by Josh’s treatment and her realization of what she had done and become. There was no hope for anything for her in Springfield ever again and she left town. Kelly left town soon afterward (leaving me with forever a warm feeling for his portrayer John Wesley Shipp). Josh had not only broken up the couple, he had decimated it and poured salt in the earth so you couldn’t even hope anythig would grow again. I was devastated and I hated Josh with all the passion my then child’s heart could muster and frankly if I think about it or even just look at Josh for too long, it’s all right there again just like it just happened. As an aside for any Manny fans reading this, just so you know, Laurel Falls was Morgan and Kelly’s special spot. I first fell in love with the place through them, though strangely Laurel Falls came to look very different over the  years. 😉

Second, Josh is jerky towards Reva. Now, I’m not excusing Reva’s behavior towards him, which is bad enough, but his behavior toward her whenever they are really together gets to such a point that I feel it and I’m definitely not one to usually sympathize with Reva. I remember when she was moving out to H.B.’s house and in with him. He was going through her clothes and picking out which ones she’d be allowed to keep, “You won’t need these as a wife of mine.” I’d have walked out on the jerk and never looked back right then or at least hit him with something heavy and told him to stuff it. Instead she takes it, throws out the clothes he wants (including the iconic white and red dresses which had been an important plot points in the H.B. storyline), but she does kind of get a look on her face like she suddenly thinking maybe everything in life with Josh won’t be better than her life with H.B. That look hurt me just to see it and as I said I’m not a big identify with Reva person. Josh, of course, was oblivious. I’ve said for so long that it’s become a cliche around my family that the only time Josh treats Reva best is right when it looks like she might have the potential to be happy with someone else. That’s when he moves in for the kill with all the romance and flowers a girl might want, but once he’s sealed the deal, she better know who’s in charge and all those crazy things she does and chances she took that made him love her when she was single, will now no longer be allowed. Being successful in marriage takes more than sex and staring off morosely in the distance when you’re not together, Josh. (Just so there are no misunderstandings this does not mean I like Reva with Jeffery. He’s a jerk, too. Actually, Reva, you really need to work on being attracted to a better class of man, all the way around.) He knows she still has a big chip in her confidence that she’s just the maid’s daughter and does he know how to dig the knife right into that spot any time they are married. When she does dare to have and express an opposite opinion, say about whether Shayne should go to college or put himself up to be drafted to the majors, he completely ignores it and does what he thinks best anyway.

Third, Josh is a jerk to other women. This topic is so broad that I plan another entire post on it. Look for “Pulling a Josh” soon. The short version is he waffles, hey Josh, pick flower petals if you can’t make up your mind any other way and no sighing allowed.

Fourth, Josh is a jerk to his kids. As Josh careens from one relationship to another, he drags his kids along for the ride and they had better instantly believe that whoever he’s currently married to is the new love of his life, totally accept her and toe the line. Having made Marah live like that for years, he had the nerve to intervene in her love life, and made life miserable for Tony Santos, unable to admit, that without the mob ties, he was incredibly close personality and maturity wise to what Josh had been like when he first reconnected with Reva, (a small improvement on the Morgan era version – Tony really was much nicer though, most of the time).  Take a look at any of the scenes where Josh is in his wheelchair, except the small part of the famous “Slut of Springfield” scene that they always show, and compare that to Tony and Marah when he tears the boat apart and rips off part of her clothes. Pretty dang close. I really think that was part of why Marah felt such an attraction to Tony, together they really made a Josh and Reva redux, especially the eternal break-up/done forever/make up cycle and the constantly trying to be good enough and being made like you failed. As for Josh’s treatment of Shayne, one word will explain – baseball. Even before any of that, Josh was always sending the kids off somewhere, with Sarah (Reva’s mother), with Rusty, with Cassie, and pretty much anyplace else they could think to send them. All the time. I think all that time that was SORASed away from them, was actually spent down on Uncle Rusty’s farm near Tulsa (as they always add).

Fifth, Josh was a jerk to Danny. Josh and Danny forged a friendship based on their mutual experience of having their wives taken away from them, early on in the Manny marriage. They helped each other out several times, but when Danny is cleared of the murder charges and goes to Josh for job, Josh turns on the Jerk Juice. He could at least politely turn him down or ask for time to think about it, instead he basically says, “like I would trust you with my money.” Um, Josh you had trusted him with your and Reva’s lives already, which he helped save, but money is an issue? Class act there, Josh. This creates a distance between the two men that is never really overcome although they do work together on future business deals and remain friendly, if not friends.

Sixth, Josh is a jerk to Little Billy. While Bill is always good enough to work at Lewis Oil and Lewis Construction when they are in a pinch and always does a good job, Josh is forever belittling his abilities there and taking back positions and authority which he had given him. This undercutting eventually leads to all the trouble in Venezela that led to Bill coming back as bitter as he was and why it took him soooo long to find happiness with Lizzie.

I’ll end with a positive bit of truth about Josh Lewis. Shortly after Reva married Jeffery, Josh had another flashing moment of inspiration that he can’t live without her and has basically moped around about it ever since. The phrase, “Josh, you need a woman” seems to be stuck on the writers clipboard because different characters say it to him all the time. My bright note is the first time one of them did, Matt I think, he said, “no, I always end up hurting them because they are not Reva.” Finally, a spark of self-knowledge, of emotional growth, at that rate Josh if we had had another 72 years with you might have moved off of my jerk list after all. 😉

Robansuefarm is the handle of one of Manny and Guiding Light‘s biggest fans following in her family’s footsteps of Guiding Light fandom since 1939. This blog is an effort to make it easy to find Guiding Light and especially Manny online. Check back here for her blog, find fanfic previews and fake WSPR newscasts on her YouTube, find podcasts that look back to old shows and audios of her fanfics on Blog Talk Radio, and finally follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

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One Response to “Josh Lewis is a Jerk and other truths”

  1. glmanny Says:

    Reblogged this on Glmanny's Blog and commented:

    Sharing that Josh Lewis is a jerk and other truths. 🙂

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